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Independent Data Performance Benchmark Test of Commercial LTE Chipsets

Wed, 01/04/2012 - 4:33am

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Signals Research Group (SRG) has announced the findings of what is presented as the industrys first and only independent data performance benchmark test of commercially-available LTE chipsets. Although the SRG report highlighted the ability of some chipsets to realize the promise of LTEs high data rates, large performance differences were found between commercially-available implementations in devices.

Using a lab-based testing approach on the Spirent 8100 solution, SRG collected and analyzed the data performance of five commercial devices from LG, Sierra Wireless, Novatel Wireless, Samsung and Fujitsu, which use chipsets from four different vendors.

"Overall the industry has made tremendous strides in the last few years, with theoretical peak data rates increasing from 3.6Mbps in 2007, when SRG and Spirent first started working together on benchmark testing, to todays 70Mbps in a 10MHz radio channel," said Michael Thelander, CEO, Signals Research Group. "It is also very heartening to see the presence of emerging baseband chipset suppliers who previously did not offer a 3G baseband chipset."

While no single chipset dominated the performance benchmark test, the SRG report concluded that:

Some devices exhibit significant problems under certain conditions, lagging the top performers by a high double-digit percentage.

The demands of the much higher throughput requirements in LTE appear to be creating unforeseen performance bottlenecks not exhibited by todays HSPA and HSPA+ chipsets.

Some chipsets misreport the quality of the radio channel, which could result in network resources being allocated to devices unable to make effective use of them, to the detriment of other network users.

This recent round of tests marked the sixth time that SRG and Spirent have collaborated on chipset performance testing. For the LTE data performance benchmark test, the Spirent 8100 solution was used to subject all the chipsets to the exact same sets of network conditions, automatically repeating each test multiple times to generate statistically significant, objective results.

The tests measured the downlink throughput and key performance indicators of each chipset at the application layer under a wide range of realistic network conditions. The test scenarios, based on the latest specifications from 3GPP Technical Reports (TRs), included various static conditions as well as industry-standard pedestrian fading and vehicular fading conditions. In total, 28 LTE test scenarios were used.

A complete analysis of the LTE chipset performance benchmark is contained in SRGs latest report, which is published today. For more information please visit www.signalsresearch.com.  

For more information on testing LTE chipset and mobile device performance, visit http://www.spirent.com/Devices-and-Equipment/LTE_devices

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